For those naysayers in the industry who think QR Codes are rubbish on a stick, I wonder what they would say about the new Nellymoser data that shows that, of the top 100 magazine publications in the U.S., 99 of them — yes, I said 99 of them — were using QR Codes?
Earlier this month, Nellymoser (a mobile computing and research company) released the results of its “mobile action code” analysis covering Q1 2012. The overall number of magazine ad pages containing a QR code or other type of action code, it reported, was up 288% over Q1 2011—from 352 in Q1 2011 to 1365 in Q1 2012.
For its study, Nellymoser analyzed the top 100 U.S. magazines by circulation and looked at the published issues from January to March 2012. Significant growth findings include:
- The percentage of magazines with at least one code went from 78% in Q1 2011 to 99% in Q1 2012.
- The total number of mobile action codes grew 288% — from 352 in Q1 2011 to 1365 in Q1 2012.
- For the first time, the percentage of magazine advertising pages containing a mobile action code exceeded 8% each month of the quarter. This is up significantly from March 2011 when just 3.55% of ad pages contained one.
- More than 450 brands ran at least one advertisement during Q1 2012 that included a code, up from 137 in Q1 2011.
- Marketers overwhelmingly favored QR codes over other types of action codes with more than 80% of all printed action codes being QR codes in Q1.
I look at these numbers and wonder about all of the comments I’ve heard and read about how the days of QR Codes are numbered. As soon as something better comes along, they say, QR Codes be discarded. I have a hard time believing that, especially given the broad base of use around the world.
QR Codes are becoming part of the fabric of our marketing. Even if they have their drawbacks (which they do), they have become a known quantity for which we are all set up and comfortable.
At a certain point, technology becomes just the way it is. While there will always been bigger, better, faster, stronger, more flexible options for certain projects, we just settle into the existing adoption base until something disruptive comes along to change the dynamic.
I wonder if we’ve passed that point for QR Codes?